Daniel Nava Still Humble As His Boston Red Sox Future Remains Unclear


Jan 15, 2015

Daniel Nava is about to parlay the Boston Red Sox’s $1 gamble into a contract in excess of $1 million.

The Red Sox purchased Nava from the Chico Outlaws of the independent Golden Baseball League for $1 back in 2008. Now the veteran outfielder is arbitration-eligible for the first time in his major league career, and MLB Trade Rumors projects he’ll receive a $1.9 million contract.

Nava couldn’t be any more appreciative of how things have turned out for him.

“It’s something I don’t take lightly at all,” Nava recently told WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford by phone. “If you’re around the world of sports enough, people look at $1 million and say that’s not very much. But when you get outside the realm of sports, $1 million is a lot of money. I don’t take that lightly at all, and I don’t say I earned it, or anything.

“I really look it as a blessing to have the opportunity to be playing this long. I don’t look at $1 million as not that much. Just because of the road I took, I don’t take it for granted that I have that opportunity. It is very special for me to be a part of it and to be around long enough to have a chance to go to arbitration. If you would have asked me five, six or seven years ago and I would have been thrilled just to make it to the big leagues.”

Nava’s perspective is both unique and refreshing. In an age when athletes often land nine-figure contracts, Nava is ecstatic about earning a six-figure deal, as it’s symbolic of him overcoming the odds to carve out a productive big league career.

The question now is whether Nava will remain with the Red Sox in 2015 and beyond. Boston has a surplus of outfielders, which could force the club to trade one or more in order to alleviate its roster logjam.

But again, Nava isn’t sweating the small stuff. The 31-year-old instead is maintaining a bigger picture outlook.

“For the most part, I’m kind of looking at it like a couple of years ago, when I was pretty sure I’m going to be on a team, and I’m sure hoping it’s the Red Sox,” Nava told Bradford. “With that in mind, I’m just training to be prepared for anything.

“Mentally, I’m prepared that anything can happen. From my understanding, they still want me, and I hope that stays the same. But as far as position and time and all that stuff, that usually plays out during the season. I’m not too focused on that.”

For someone about to earn his most lucrative paycheck to date, Nava sure hasn’t changed much from a personality standpoint. His focus still is on controlling what he can control.

A wild baseball journey will do that to a man.

Click for more on Nava’s future >>

Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images

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